Big Middleware Deals

Oracles purchase of BEA and Suns buying of MySQL will have profound impact on the IT software market. Oracle now has the technology to challenge IBM and SAP across the board in all Fortune 1000 shops. My major reservation is whether Oracle can intelligently marshal and deploy all the IP assets it has on board with PeopleSoft, JDEdwards, Siebel, Hyperion and now BEA. There is a lot of overlap across ERP(Oracle, Peoplesoft, JDEdwards, Siebel – all Fusioning together now), BI (Oracle, Siebel, Hyperion, and BEA with some distinctly different approaches) and now middleware/Web Services (Oracle, Siebel, Hyperion, Peoplesoft and BEA have even internally many conflicting technologies). The whole problem is that the handwriting is on the wall and the technical expertise that knows the competing technologies decays/leaves with a half life of 3-8 months often to Open Source or competitive harbors. As the industry consolidates – that timeline may be even shorter for Oracle.

Sun on the other hand, now becomes a leading provider of Open Source IT software. It now can provide the complete solution from middleware through database to office suite softeware to IT shops that want to take the Open Source route. Java continues to rule the top of the programming language roost while rivals like C++ continue to lose ground. In fact the big move has been for Web savvy languages such as PHP, Python, and ActionScript to see surges. But then again, Delphi, Lua, Foxpro, and Logo have also moved up in the same technical coverage measures – so take these readings with a grain of salt.

But undisputedly, Sun can now fill their boxes with some of the best and most productive combos of Open Source software in the market. And MySQL has the perfect database architecture for Sun. One can unbolt one engine and replace it with another like Innobase will be replaced by Falcon. I fully expect MySQL to embark on creating an engine that is tuned to the new Sun filesystem. In addition, I expect MySQL will also target Solaris for quicker updates and may add a content management/search scope based on Sun Technology to the MySQL sphere. In short going into an Open Software world, Sun is going to have no small advantage. This is a superb acquisition.

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